Recovery HR too high

I’m still relatively new here having migrated from a couple of years at TrainerRoad. Last night I did Revolver and noticed that during the 1 minute recovery sessions my HR did not come down to the recommended target before the next hard interval. This has been the case for other interval workouts too.

So far, I have been able to complete all the workouts without too much difficulty, but I’m wondering if I it would be better to take a longer recovery to get my heart rate down before hitting it hard again.

I will appreciate any feedback and guidance. Thanks!

Hi Steve, Welcome!

I have the same experience. It takes a while for your heart rate to ramp up and calm down. As such the targets are unrealistic for short efforts and short recoveries.

I ignore them. In fact, I stopped using the heart rate monitor for anything other than the HM and FF tests.


@TrapMeSuf @Talkwithdavis +1 for ignoring them. I think that is just how the workout player is currently configured and the basic message is to relax and recover between intervals.


I also ignore the heart rate. Although I like seeing it there in the screen as evidence that I’m still alive.


I’m new to train with smart trainer, and I’m experiencing the same problem with not able to follow THE HR recommendation. But for me the biggest problem is the suggested increase. It always take much longer to reach the higher HR suggested by the program. Is that something to worry about? I read somewhere that unable to increase or reach high HR value can be a sign of over training or other health issues. Any comment on that?


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For short intervals, I tend to take the heart values as the effort level your heart rate would reach if the interval was long enough. So for revolver the 1 min recovery power target would get me to zone 1 heart rate if it was longer. The same is true, to a certain extent, for the actual intervals themselves, but hydration/ambient temperature/fatigue/individual physiology/other factors will all determine heart rate so it’s best to concentrate on power targets but just keep an eye on your heart rate as it’s useful to track. Might be worth listening to the knowledge podcast on tracking metrics.


It often takes 3 to 5 minutes for heart rate to catch up to steady effort. Don’t worry about it.

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Hi @Talkwithdavis do you use a fan when you ride ? I purchased a portable Air Blower to use with my Tacx Neo 2 and after using it noticed that not only did my HR drop when I was in recovery but the amount of sweat also dropped due to my body temperature being lower due to the cold air being blasted at it.

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I just did Half Monty yesterday. It took over 3 minutes to get my heart rate up to the required zone and I was frequently adjusting my intensity to keep my HR in the zone. The lag time even at those lower rates would not fully adjust quickly. I would never expect a one minute recovery after any intense effort to drop significantly.

Don’t worry about it, I think you are in the norm, not the exception.

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Yep, agreed. The recovery intervals are there to allow you to complete all the high efforts - you couldnt be able to spend so long in the MAP/AC area without them. If you’re managing to complete the workout, don’t worry at all. If you find that you’re just not getting enough recovery overall and are blowing up too early then that’s a different thing (but even then remember that these are hard qorkotus. Some people never finish revolver, some add on extra recovery to allow them through it, etc).

After a few sessions and a re-test or two you might finnd yourself at the other end of the completion-spectrum. Something to look forward to!

Ha, my wife was commenting that it looked like I had a windburn on my cheeks this morning! I’m thinking it’s because I was sweating so much while having the fan blow full force. I should check out those Air Blower ones though.

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I love this. Maybe one day there will be a version of the Wahoo Headwind that also provides horizonal sleet and rain, to really get that outdoor-ride-feeling.


A fan is required equipment. There are some articles about how letting your core get too hot causes heart rate to go up and performance to drop (exactly what you experienced). A fan keeps you cool(er).

They surely are! The hardest qorkoti (?) I do.

Thanks for the feedback. My 4DP showed that the MAP needs the most work and the stuff I did in TR was mostly sweet spot FTP stuff so I’m hoping you’re right about having something to look forward to! So far, I’m finding the sessions very manageable.

Blimey, where did that one come from? I have a dodgy finger and often misstype certain letters, but that is quite something!

*these are hard workouts…!

Weirdly, when I wrote my comment, qorkotus auto-corrected to workout and I had to change it back.

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There has been a lot written on these forums about pacing the full frontal test. It is very common for newcomers to see drastic improvements or changes soon after coming over to the Sufferfest. This is not necessarily anything to do with your inital levels of fitness, just that the FF test is a little different to other FTP or ramp tests. (That said, you might be Peter Sagan for all I know, so don’t take this as anything other than a ‘you may see thigns change quickly’).

Personally I find the 5minute MAP section of FF the hardest, both outright as an effort but also to pace. In the 20mins you have time to assess how you are doing and slowly ramp it up. In the 5mins you really need to be right on the limit the whole way as there is no getting it back if you undercook it. It’s a bloody hard test, but you may well find that your MAP metric will improve a lot, particularly in comparison to your FTP since if you’re more fatigued fromm the 5misn then it has an impact on the 20mins…

TLDR: Fret not, the pain will come.

If your in the UK you can get one here Vacmaster®Air Movers and Turbo Fans – by Cleva and they now do a fitness fan for indoor cycling so you can change intensity while still riding

The HR target zones displayed in the workout player ALWAYS match the corresponding target Power zone. So, if you should be riding with Z4 Power, the workout player will always show the corresponding Z4 HR zones. It doesn’t matter if this is the first second of an intense 20 second AC effort, the 90th second of a moderately intense MAP effort, or 5 seconds of an NM sprint effort.

This doesn’t mean that your HR should always match. Far from it. The key to the workouts - as mentioned before in this thread - is to match the target Power (and sometimes Cadence) except for the constrained effort in Half Monty. And then your HR will follow.

As has also been pointed out in this thread, your HR will always lag behind your effort - especially for short intense intervals. You can’t expect your HR to catch up that quickly. And then when dropping back down from a long intense effort your HR will lag on the way down, as well.

And also, if you reduce the intensity of your workouts, the HR zones do NOT adjust. So, if you lowered your workout to 85% intensity so that all your Z5 efforts became Z4 efforts, the workout player will still show the HR target zone that corresponds to the 100% intensity power target.

So, as previously mentioned, as long as you have a smart trainer and/or a power meter, unless you’re doing the Half Monty constrained effort, just ride to the displayed Power targets and ignore the displayed HR target zones. They are there for reference, and for review after your workout, but there’s little use in trying to match them due to all the reasons previously mentioned.